UN World Food Programme

WFP’s Cash-For-Training Opens New Doors To Jordan’s Youth

Nayef, 24, at WFP's vocational training centre in Irbid. He is participating in a cash-for-training programme. Copyright: WFP/Faten Al-Hindi

WFP launched a cash-for-training programme in Jordan that is breathing hope into the lives of young men like Nayef, 24, who has recently joined the vocational training centre in Irbid in northern Jordan. From a daily wager who could not guarantee his next job, Nayef is now looking forward to joining the skilled-workers’ world.

Irbid, JORDAN - Working as a construction worker carrying cement and stones for 5 Jordanian Dinars (US$ 7) per day was not exactly how Nayef wanted to spend the rest of his life. The high-school graduate wanted to get more out of his life and help his struggling family of four siblings and his parents.

The 24-year-old youth lives in his family’s house that totally depends on his father’s monthly pension that barely covers their basic food needs. The 350 Jordanian Dinar (US$ 494) pension and Nayef’s occasional income as a daily wager go only a little way for this family of seven.

“Our daily meal is mainly rice and salad and sometimes falafel (chickpea balls). We eat meat only once a week on Fridays and can only afford fruits three times a month,” says Nayef. “We do not want to pressure our dad and continue relying on him.”

The oldest son in the family says he was looking for any glimpse of hope to help support his family.

“I was on the bus on my way looking for a job when I heard people talking about some NGO offering technical training opportunities,” he says. “I didn’t let this go and decided to pursue the issue and see if I can be part of this training.”

Nayef is now among the first group of 439 young Jordanian trainees participating in WFP’s cash-for-training programme that targets vulnerable Jordanians affected by the economic crisis and strains the Syrian crisis has further put on Jordan’s struggling economy. WFP launched this training thanks to a donation from US Government's Office of Food for Peace (FFP) in addition to contributions from Tomorrow/Bokra initiative and private sector companies in Jordan.

Nayef has high hopes in this training and is so excited to be receiving cold chain repair training; a skill that will open for him a new door in the labour market. On top of that, the hopeful young man will receive cash from WFP every month in return for the time he spends training.

WFP in collaboration with National alliance against hunger is supporting the selected registered Jordanian youth and is supporting the government in decreasing the percentage of unemployment in the country.